A Note on Determination of Atracurium and Its Metabolites

  • E. A. M. Neill
Part of the Methodological Surveys in Biochemistry and Analysis book series (MSBA, volume 12)


Atracurium is a neuromuscular blocking agent with the structure shown overleaf. It was designed to undergo rapid non-enzymic inactivation at physiological pH and temperature by a process of Hofmann elimination [1], which is advantageous because a drug which relies upon metabolism or excretion to terminate its actions may have a prolonged effect in patients with hepatic or renal insufficiency. In this elimination, a quaternary amine becomes tertiary [2] (Fig. 1).


Quaternary Amine Sodium Nitrate Neuromuscular Blocking Agent Ester Hydrolysis Wellcome Research 
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  1. 1.
    Hughes, R. & Chappie, D.J. (1981)Br. J. Anaesth. 53, 31–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Geissman, T.A. (1977) Principles of Organic Chemistry, 4th edn., Freeman, San Francisco, 1035 ppGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. A. M. Neill
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Drug Metabolism Wellcome Research LaboratoriesBeckenham, KentUK

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